When it comes to upgrading and really enhancing guns or accessories to guns, it is hard to beat paying under $20, to upgrade everything you own! Now I do caution, remember you can ruin and screw up your gun or magazines very easily if not done correctly. So attention to detail is needed. Taking your time and being methodical will pay off in the long run. I myself, am not patient with most things, but when it comes to screwing up a $400+ gun or my Bulgarian AK-74 magazines, I slow down. Now I have talked and paid friends to stipple things in the past, kind of leery of doing it myself. But recently I have changed my mind, and taken the dive into the stippling game. I have found out, this is not hard! After watching many videos and talking to people, they made it seem like if you sniffle when you stipple (I copyright that right now, sniffle while you stipple!), you will screw up you gun forever. It is not like that, at least for me. Now lets get down to how to stipple.
First off, what do I use? I went to Home Depot and got a 750 Degree soldering iron. Cost around $15 and was probably the cheapest one there. I went home, whipped out a Bulgarian Circle 10 magazine, yea I certainly did not mess around and grabbed the bull by the horns, and started making small dots, and just barely pressing on the plastic, just to get a feel for stippling. In doing so, I learned that quick and constant pressing in an area made a nice grippy texture. Now, when I have seen pictures or talked to people I see different designs. So then I moved onto a push stroke, very small, kind of pattern. Now this is the pattern and feel I like better. It looks more uniform and sexier to me. Grip is still there with this pattern and it is the one that I will be using as I just like it. Now I have seen people like Jeff Bloovman just make his stipple jobs on his Glock look gnarly and basically it looks like someone meant to piss someone off by messing up his gun. But, he just wants some texture. Each person has a different feel for what they like.
A very light stipple would be my recommendation to everyone, as it takes smooth and makes it grippy. Just the slightest stipple will increase grip. Now you can go heavy and make huge dimples for your stippling jobs, but you always must remember the thickness of the item you are using, going to far and degrade the guns or magazines integrity. Designs can be made as well, and this can be a very artistic venture, if you have the background and patience to do so. The key is to know where to stipple and where it is either not needed or a negative thing. Many people do not like to stipple an entire Glock frame as they say it rubs on the webbing of their hand during shooting all day. To each their own, mine does not do that, but I could understand their feeling on it. So grab your gun or magazine and see where stippling could help you. For instance, I think say on a Glock frame, where your thumb lays on the front of the frame would be a positive place to stipple. It gives you a secure feeling and enhances your grip and it gives you a textured feeling for when you have your finger off the trigger.
Now there are many places doing custom work with stippling, and doing it very, very well and uniformed and basically kick ass. But if you want function over super sexy and fitting in with the cool kids, just grab a soldering iron and grab some shitty magazine you have and practice, then apply that to you gun as you see fit. That is what I did, and in the long run you learn a skill and save tons of money and give your gear that added personal feeling that you did it yourself.